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OE Tire Brands Finding Right Balance, J.D. Power Finds

Overall customer satisfaction with original equipment (OE) tires reaches an all-time high in 2020, as tire manufacturers have found the right balance of performance characteristics — without making sacrifices that jeopardize the customer experience. That’s according to the J.D. Power 2020 U.S. Original Equipment Tire Customer Satisfaction Study, just released. In fact, tire brands have been steadily improving this balance over the past five years, as satisfaction has been on a steady incline.

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The annual study measures tire owner satisfaction in four key areas (in order of importance): tire wear; tire ride; tire traction/handling; and tire appearance. Rankings are included for three vehicle segments: luxury; passenger car; and truck/utility.

“As the technology behind tires improves, we see manufacturers becoming very adept at incorporating those advancements in a way that maximizes overall tire performance,” said Brent Gruber, senior director of automotive quality practice at J.D. Power. “It wasn’t very long ago that we saw considerable trade-offs in tire performance where, for example, tires optimized for wear were not particularly good with characteristics such as traction and handling. There was more give and take with tire performance. Now, our data shows many manufacturers are producing tires capable of excelling in all areas.”

Michelin ranks highest in two vehicle segments, scoring 778 in luxury and 746 in truck/utility (on a 1,000-point scale). Pirelli ranks highest in passenger car with a score of 788.

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The 2020 U.S. Original Equipment Tire Customer Satisfaction Study is based on responses from 26,131 owners of 2018 and 2019 model-year vehicles and was fielded from October through December 2019.

For more information about the Original Equipment Tire Customer Satisfaction Study, click here

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